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How do you help young people explore what they want to do in life?

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    Nov 17 2011: Give them space, time, and the opportunity to try the things they want to try.
  • Nov 19 2011: Expose them to everything possible, open their eyes to curiosity, engage in real conversation not placebos and, most importantly, talk to them as small adults and then accept that is all you can do in the final analysis.
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    Nov 19 2011: Create a home, an environment of healthy inspiration, I love this quote by Benjamin Franklin:
    "A house is not a home unless it contains food and fire for the mind as well as the body." - Then listen and observe the child. They will find their own passion. Gently support and nurture.lol
  • Nov 18 2011: Good parenting, Scouting, Professional mentoring, and sponsored Extra-curricular activities geared toward different careers.
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    Nov 18 2011: I'm not sure how American schools are run; from how they're portrayed in the media it seems like some sort of competitive race, even from Kindergarten.

    I rather approve of the way my High School (in Australia) showed us many different pathways. From year 7 to year 9 we had a range of classes. From the staple Maths, English, Science and Sport; to others such as Textiles, Woodwork, Drama, IT etc. Then starting in year 9 you were able to begin choosing your own units; until in years 11 and 12 you could choose whatever units you wanted to (although we had to choose and English unit).

    Personally I found that this method turned me from a rather shy, withdrawn child in year 7; into an outgoing, happier one by year 12.

    I'd also suggest to parents to not force their children into activities that they think will improve their chances into getting into college, into that Medicine or Law degree. Sometimes activities with no direct benefit have the most impact on children's lives (i.e. Playing Piano, Drama classes, Dancing, Cooking classes etc.)
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    Nov 18 2011: they have to get out and explore the world, they have to open there eyes and travel outside of there city or state. To see poverty in a city like New Orleans, and actually being in the city, made me donate more and help out the community. Young teens need to see something dramatic to shock themselves into finding themselves.
  • Nov 17 2011: A friend of mine has a son that only tolerates (correct word for his feelings) certain classes in school. He could be an honor student if he wished but feels his teachers are boring as are some of the subjects (including math & chemistry). This child is 13 and only likes biology, especially marine bio.
    Told my friend to acquire a few college books on the subject & give to his son to enjoy. The hope here is that the child will find out on his own what is needed to reach his goal.
    Giving a child a few "hints" in a direction usually sees that same child come to the right conclusions on their own-there by using their own mind in the discovery process & not just taking an adult's word for it.